We're sharing the most common questions we hear from customers as they move from VMware to Scale Computing
With so many customers coming from VMware, there are a common set of questions we hear on their journey to Scale Computing Platform that I thought might be worth sharing. Many are looking at alternatives due to the recent acquisition. Others are just exploring alternatives to avoid the “vTax” that comes from not fully utilizing the available capabilities that exceed their needs.
In either case, below are some questions and responses to help those currently exploring a move from VMware:
Support for my Workload
Fear of the Unknown
Will my apps be supported when running on something other than VMware?
Yes! In fact, with the thousands of customers running Scale Computing HyperCore, there is a strong possibility that you can even reference existing users running your exact application.
Scale Computing supports the entire SC//Platform of hardware, software, and services. This includes the HyperCore™ operating system which includes software-defined storage and the virtualization hypervisor. Scale Computing provides a clear list of supported operating systems including Windows and Linux operating system versions and editions in the HyperCore Support Matrix.
Scale Computing supports and offers fixes for our hardware and virtualization platform. For applications, we are fully prepared to support Windows and Linux operating systems running on SC//HyperCore and therefore, applications designed to run on Windows and Linux should be supported by their vendors for SC//HyperCore. Operating system vendors offer fixes for operating system issues. Application vendors offer fixes for application issues. Working together, there should be no issue supporting applications on SC//HyperCore that are designed to run on Windows or Linux.
SC//HyperCore includes a KVM-based hypervisor that supports a different virtual disk type than the VMDK of a VMware environment. This requires that the workloads be migrated (v2v) from the existing environment onto SC//Platform.
How hard will it be to migrate my workloads from VMware onto SC//Platform?
Converting an existing VMware workload to run on SC//Platform is easy! For Windows and Linux VMs, we offer Scale Computing Move, which requires near zero downtime and gives the user ultimate control of deciding when to cutover from the source machine running in VMware. For other workloads, SC//HyperCore also supports virtual disk uploads which can convert from VMDK to a HyperCore format for attaching to workloads directly. Of course, any backup solution that supports bare-metal recovery can also be used to transfer workloads onto SC//Platform if that is preferred. We supplement this feature set with a full migration service to augment your team’s capabilities with our expertise and experience for a hands-off migration experience.
We had zero operational impact during a complicated infrastructure migration from a traditional vSphere/Server/SAN to the Scale Computing platform. Ongoing management is very straight forward which is important for those of us who only spend 5-10% of our time managing infrastructure. So far it has truly been a set and forget system.— Seth Maguire, Manager of Software Engineering, LCI Engineering Inc.
...the migration to Scale Computing was one of the smoothest migrations I’ve been involved with in 25+ years of working in IT.— Bobby Kewan, IT Director, City of Pewaukee
SC//HyperCore’s KVM-based hypervisor gives some prospects pause out of fear of having to learn a new tool.
Do I need training on KVM to run SC//Platform?
No! SC//HyperCore utilizes KVM as the basis for our hypervisor, but it does not require users to have to learn or understand KVM. Our tagline is Simplicity Engineered, which means that we take very complex systems such as KVM and wrap that with our IP to provide a very easy-to-manage environment.
It is one of the greatest lightweight clusters I ever worked with. Stable, no BS straight forward KVM, accessible by different ways and open to development.— Maarten Clement, IT Architect - Design & Innovations, Delhaize Belgium
Can I still use my favorite backup product of choice with SC//Platform?
Yes, in most cases! We commonly hear this from Veeam and other backup vendor users who use in-guest agents to continue using their backup product of choice. Those looking for agentless backup from a third party can use Acronis Cyber Protect which includes proactive, ML-based ransomware protection. Many users coming from VMware find that the built-in HyperCore Data Protection Suite negates the need for third-party backup products entirely though. This includes support for thousands of snapshots per virtual disk, replication between SC//HyperCore clusters with easy failover/failback capabilities and even file-level restore.
Can I still leverage my existing VMware knowledge and skills?
Yes! The concepts of virtualization/VMs remain the same between both VMware and Scale Computing. Here are a few comparisons of features/management differences to see the translation:
|Licensing / Subscription
VMware Cloud Foundation (VCF)
VMware vSphere Essentials Plus Kit (VVEP)
VMware vSphere Standard (VVS)
VMware vSphere Foundation (VVF)
SC//Fleet Manager license (optional)
|vSphere Hypervisor (ESXi)
|Scale Computing HyperCore (KVM-based)
|vCenter Server runs as a separate Linux VM/Server per site in the environment
|SC//HyperCore built-in web-based / REST API management from any node in the system, optionally connect to SC//Fleet Manager for global centralized management
|vSAN, datastores / NFS / Block (iSCSI/other) to manage
|Scale Computing Reliable Independent Block Engine (SCRIBE) - Treats all storage in the cluster as a single logical pool for management and scalability purposes. No external storage to manage, no shares / targets / LUNs to create or maintain
|SCRIBE - No external storage to manage, no shares / targets / luns to create or maintain
|vSphere OS / ESXi Hypervisor patching; requires HCL validation, vCenter interoperability, node “maintenance mode”
|Unified, full stack updates with integrated pre-flight update checking
|In Guest tools
|SC// Guest Tools (Virtio)
|Requires HA Configuration
|Multi-node SC//HyperCore clusters handle automatic failover of VMs, including storage redundancy
|Tiered by severity: Basic, Production, Premier, Success, Select, or Per Incident which determine support team availability and response time
|One level: 24x7x365
Total cost of ownership (TCO)
Will customers have to pay more?
No. VMware is known for its licensing costs, which can be a significant barrier for smaller organizations. In contrast, SC//Platform is a SC//Platform is a cost-effective alternative that offers robust virtualization and hyperconverged infrastructure without breaking the bank.
Scale Computing’s all-in-one approach means there’s no need for customers to purchase separate licenses for virtualization software, storage, and backup solutions. This consolidation leads to considerable cost savings. Moreover, the predictable and transparent pricing model of Scale Computing simplifies budgeting and reduces the risk of unexpected expenses associated with VMware’s complex licensing structure.
The vast majority of SC//Platform users have come from a VMware environment and we are seeing increased demand as of late. I would recommend anyone considering this switch to read the reviews of former VMware customers to know that they aren’t alone in this journey.
We invite you to join Scale Computing for a 60-minute discovery call to see how you can stress less while enabling and supporting virtualization. You’ll receive a gift for a 60-minute call to discuss your infrastructure options. Find out more and sign up for a 60-minute discovery call.